Hello there. I am Terry and I am a full-time undergraduate based in Singapore. I take photos, write a blog and design websites.

And no, I'm not a teddy bear.

Sabbaticals Day #4 – Stupidity

*Remember to read the post after this!

Yes, I agree to an extremely large extent that today is filled with stupidity. Argh, for some unknown reason Discovery Channel came here to shoot a documentary about the history of Singapore. And during today’s flag-raising ceremony we found out that they’re filming us!

I have a question here – how does the history of Singapore got to do with our very own flag-raising ceremony? My friend explains to me that since they are filming the history of Singapore, Mr Tan Kah Kee (who passed away decades ago), the great Chinese educator and businessmen, is also one of their story character. He build my school, previously known as the Chinese High School, and then because it is somehow related to my school that they have to film the flag-raising ceremony. Hmm, quite a weird reasoning.


The filming of our flag-raising ceremony. Note what’s Mr Ang (the legendary s*cker, who is wearing a white shirt) is doing. The filming crew is behind the flag-pole (at my perspective).

Anyway, we did the entire flag-raising ceremony 4 times today and everyone was at the verge of freaking out when Mr Joseph Tan announced that we’ll have to do the 5th too. How depressing we sang the long-winded school song 4 times already and the glaring morning sun is beating on our face.

Finally at 8.10am we continued on our Sabbaticals course. We are asked to synthesize Aspirin, found in Paracetamol (or Panadol) in the market. The process is really very unforgettable to me. Firstly we are asked to add salicylic acid with 3 drops of phosphate solution and some other lame solutions. Ew, the reagents themselves already stinks, not to mention the reacting process, where nose-killing fumes are liberated.

This photo shows Yanmin carefully adding some unknown solution to reactant. Yucks, that smell really stinks. The fumes actually irritates the eyes and we keep tearing like morons crying over spilled milk.

We added the solution slowly into the beaker slowly to prevent over-heating because of far-too-vigorous reaction. However this gave more chance for the stinky gases to be emitted into the thin air. Suddenly I feel very stupid.

The photo on the right shows we people heating the mixture over the electronic heater. The fumes are still being liberated and this turned the atmosphere in the laboratory very horrible. This smells like some dinosaur-era air filled with carbon dioxide. Actually it smells like vinegar, and when I attempted to smell it the first time my nose was stung by the horrible stench. Argh, the smell still lingers in my nose now.

The real stupidity struck me as before waiting the reaction to complete I added 1.5ml of water into the beaker (we are instructed to add water only after the reaction stopped), which gave the entire thing to a halt and we’ve to start all over again. Sucks to be me.

Anyway, I feel even more stupid when I found out that I am doing the part of the work that should be done by Wilson and Choon Boon (don’t mention about Choon Boon, he sucks big time). This gave them free time to bug me to lend him my laptop for gaming purposes (Wilson) and saying good words to the instructors (kiss ass Choon Boon).

Hope that I won’t feel even more stupid when I get my result slips back tomorrow. Can anything be more stupid that today?

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